Tech titans in bitcoin debate at Congress

On Thursday Congress will sit down with the crypto market and ask the hard questions: What is going on with ICOs? Who is, and who is not, involved? How are ICOs bringing blockchain into the limelight? Who are the finance and tech titans who hold the keys?

It was announced in August that representatives from Digital Currency Group (DCG), Chainalysis, Rigel Financial, Balanced, Mira, Coinlist, MINDBOOK, Blockchain Capital, iShares* Index Funds, Capital Research Global Investors and PAMONG* are going to testify to the US House Financial Services committee about the state of the market.

Among other questions, the cryptocurrency-related panel will provide an update on recent developments and discuss how to deal with the increase in ICOs (initial coin offerings) and crypto trading and investing on exchanges worldwide. The report will also give insight into cryptocurrencies and blockchain currencies beyond just Bitcoin and ether, which are the most prominent cryptocurrencies currently available.

While the bitcoin hype has waned a bit this year, recent industry movements prove that the crypto community is on its way to commercializing blockchain technology and other developments. Consumers and individuals around the world, including US lawmakers, are now looking at these technologies in a broad spectrum of uses from landline communication to the financial industry.

The panel is one of several scheduled for this week, including a hearing from the International Monetary Fund that questions why cryptocurrency is not more readily accepted internationally. If the reputation it cultivated with Bitcoin stumbles, the silver lining is the increased recognition the country and its regulator is receiving from both the public and regulators.

Attendees include 11 members of Congress, as well as commodity brokers including Ken Cook, president of the environmental and sociological research organization Oceana, and Ferdinand von Prondzynski, an expert on blockchain solutions. He is also a member of the executive committee of the International Federation of Commodity Commodities Exchanges. The total estimate of speakers is 40.

This is the latest in a string of congressional hearings that see members of Congress acting as auditors for the US treasury department and the Securities and Exchange Commission, and court cases for digital currency investors including a high-profile judge in Manhattan, Eric Marshall.

All this interest in bitcoin may have unnerved the crypto community, but on the contrary, is resulting in better regulation and more transparency, said Michael Liebowitz, CEO of Chainalysis.

Crypto Chiefs will meet on Friday at 9:30am in the Committee Room 214 of the Rayburn House Office Building. The live stream may be accessed here.

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